Tuesday, August 31, 2010
Monday, August 30, 2010
Parcement pasta is not something new but it is usually served in authentic Italian restaurants (which means that you got to pay more to enjoy it). It is unusual to see it in the menu of a fast-food chain. Pizza Hut makes it affordable to everyone now!
Pastas are wrapped and baked in parcement paper just before served. This allows the pastas to absorb the sauce and seal in all delightful flavours. The cooking technique, cooking in paper, is called en papillote in French or al Cartoccio in Italian.
To me the paper parcel just looks like a gift being presented on a plate. Part of the pleasure is unwrapping it.
Let me showcase my first "gift".
Did you notice the wooden clip? It is a token from Pizza Hut for customers to bring home as souvenir but to me it has got another usage. Let me show you at the end of this post.
Unveiling the surprise....
It's steaming hot with a blend of garlic and buttery scent! Besides char-grilled chicken, other ingredients include turkey bacon, fresh button mushroom, garlic and capsicums.
It's very tender and juicy and the serving is very generous. I didn't count but I think probably there are five to six pieces of it.
I am not a cream-based person but I kind of like the sauce because unlike other cream sauce which I had before, this tasted buttery with hint of garlic but not overly creamy. What's more? The spaghetti is cooked till al dente which I think it is super difficult to achieve that. To me this is what I look up for when I order a plate of pasta.
I was quite surprise to see chili padi in an Italian dish but was glad that the chef at Pizza Hut did that. The moment I bitted on it, with my limited vocabulary, I couldn't think of other words but "shiok" (if you ever consider this is a vocabulary).
The tongue-numbing chilli padi coupled with the tangy tomato sauce made me want to have more despite I already had the char-grilled chicken parcement pasta and some other dishes (you will see them below).
On the same day, I also tasted....
I like to eat seafood tofu but I never think that it can be added into salad. I like the combo.
Good to share among friends. On the plate there are sweet 'n' spicy drumlets, criss cross fries, calamari rings and scallop rolls.
This is highly recommended. Don't you think they look like pork ribs? You definitely won't see any pork served in Pizza Hut as it is a Halal certified restaurant. The chef used the tender chicken thigh, cut into rectangular shape to resemble ribs then fried till crispy on the outside and succulent on the inside. A must-try!
(From left) Emerald Sparkle, green apple flavoured sparkling drink with apple bits. Berri Sparkle, strawberry flavoured sparkling drink with strawberry bits. Summer Sparkle, mango flavoured sparkling drink with mango bits.
Guess which one I ordered?
Savoury-sweet brownie cheesecake paired with sinfully rich banana choco mousse cake drizzled with chocolate sauce (I can taste cinnamon in it too). Yummy! I didn't know that Pizza Hut could make such nice cakes.
(Thanks to all friendly staff from Pizza Hut for their hospitality. To be frank, I haven't stepped into Pizza Hut for quite some times (actually many years), if not of this tasting session I wouldn't know there are so many new items in its menu now besides pizzas, garlic breads and drumlets. When comes to dining place, I have another option now.)
Friday, August 27, 2010
Lucius现在可以开始尝试solid food了，喂食的开始又是一个新的里程碑，各位妈咪们如有什么忠告或是建议请多多给我留言 ，先谢谢咯！
(Lucius, 6 months, 9kg, 70cm)
Monday, August 23, 2010
4 egg yolk
2 tbsp cooking oil
50g yum & mixed cereal drink
Superfine flour + 1 sachet (38g) yum & mixed cereal = 80g
¼ tsp baking power
¼ tsp salt
4 egg white
¼ tsp cream of tartar
1) Preheat oven to 175C, prepare paper cup.
3) Add oil and yum & mixed cereal drink, whisk till combined.
8) Add the yolk mixture to the balance meringue, fold gentle till just incorporated.
9) Pour the batter into paper cup till about 75-80% full. Bake for about 20-25 mins.
Friday, August 20, 2010
All the names (I hope I didn't miss out any)
My little helper, baby Lucius. He looked unprepared.
Please email me your mailing address. My email address can be found in my profile.
Last but not least, a big THANK YOU to all of you who had left your comments and participated in this little giveaway.
Thursday, August 19, 2010
You can always use chocolate milk but I don't usually buy chocolate milk whereas I always have one or two packs of milk (fresh/UHT) at home mainly for baking purpose. In the other hand, Milo is a common drink and it's available in many households as compared with cocoa powder. So I decided to use Milo for this dessert.
The colour of the Milo Panna Cotta looks pale in picture because the Milo powder had sank to the bottom after a while, creating a chocolate layer at the bottom. Yummy!
2 tsp gelatin powder
3 tbsp water
2 cups (480ml) full cream milk
1 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp Milo (use more if desired)
1) Sprinkle gelatin in water, set aside to allow the gelatin to swell for about 10 mins.
2) Combine the remaining ingredients (except Milo) in a saucepan over medium low heat, stir occasionally until the sugar dissolves and tiny bubbles appear around the edge of the pan, add Milo, stir till well mixed. Remove from heat and add the gelatin, stir until it is thoroughly incorporated.
3) Pour the milk mixture into small ramekins/cups, leave to cool at room temperature and refrigerate for at least 6 hours or overnight.
Replace milk with chocalate milk and omit Milo.
Wednesday, August 18, 2010
The liquid to flour ratio in the original recipe is very high, higher than any bread recipe that I have ever tried. I was a bit skeptical but I still followed the recipe. When it was time to add the raisins, the mixture still looked like wet batter, normally by that time soft dough should be formed.
I was hesitating if I should add more flour..... I didn't want to waste one cup of rum-soaked raisins just in case the bread didn't turn out well. At the end I followed my instinct (aka "act smart" 假厉害) to add more flour. I didn't measure, just added bit by bit until I saw dough was formed, probably about 6 - 7 tbsp. Besides that I also omitted most of the spices used, as I didn't have them at home.
I only tasted the bread on the next day. Texture wise, it's slightly to the dense side (due to the excess flour added?), not cottony soft but not hard either. Taste wise it's good (can't go wrong with coffee and rum-soaked raisins) though the coffee taste was not as prominent as I expected (even though I used illy espresso coffee!).
I think I should not add the additional flour. I am quite sure the bread will turn out much softer with lesser flour. I should trust the authors because all the recipes were tested and tasted numerous times as what written in the book. Stupid me.
Anyway, my family still finished the whole loaf...in one day time. :)
1-1/3 cups (325ml) freshly brewed coffee (room temperature)
1¼ tsp salt
2 tbsp packed brown sugar
2 tbsp vegetable oil
2¾ cups bread flour (I added more than required)
1½ tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp ground allspice (I omitted)
¼ tsp ground cloves (I omitted)
1½ tsp instant yeast
1 cup raisins (I pre-soaked in rum)
By Bread Machine
1) Measure all ingredients except raisins into baking pan in the order recommended by the manufacturer of your bread machine. Insert pan into the oven chamber.
2) Select "Sweet Cycle".
3) Add raisins at the "add ingredients" signal.
4) Remove and cool on wire rack once done.
Brew extra-strong coffee and make sure to let it cool to room temperature before using it; hot liquid will kill the yeast. What I did was make the coffee with 1 cup of hot water then added 1/3 cup of cold water to make it into room temperature. This way I do not need to wait too long for the coffee to cool down.
Substitute an equal amount of ground ginger for the allspice.
(Recipe reference: 300 Best Bread Machine Recipes by Donna Washburn and Heather Butt)
Monday, August 16, 2010
Sharing my adapted recipe from here.
½ cup (115g) butter (soften at room temperature)
1 cup sugar (depends on sweetness of the bananas used)(I cut down to 120g and used partial brown sugar)
2 eggs (lightly beaten)
1¼ cup mashed bananas (I used about 8 small bananas)
½ cup sour cream or yogurt (one small tub of yogurt is just nice)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup plain flour }
½ cup whoemeal flour } total I used 200g plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
1½ tsp cinnamon powder
Pinch of salt (optional, not in original recipe)
1 cup nuts (any nut of your choice, chopped and pre-toasted)(I omitted this and sprinkled some almond flakes on top instead)
1) Line and grease a 9"x5" loaf pan. Combine (D) and mix well. Preheat oven to 175C.
2) Beat (A) till fluffy. Add (B) bit by bit. Mix well before each addition.
3) Add (C), mix well. Sift in (D) in a few sessions, beat at low speed till just incorporated.
4) Fold in (E) with a spatula. Bake for 50 - 60 mins till cooked (a skewer inserted and comes out clean). Leave in pan for a few mins, unmould and cool on wire rack.
1) Use very ripe bananas for a more yummy cake.
2) Total amount of mashed bananas and sour cream/yogurt equal to 1-3/4 cups, can use more bananas and less sour cream/yogurt or vice versa.
3) I will try to use 2 small loaf pans or a bigger pan next time to cut down the baking time (can enjoy the cake earlier and also to save electricity cost).
I end this post with a snap shot of Lucius taken last night. Happy baking!